(BLACK PRESS FILE PHOTO)

UPDATE: Eckville Eagles move to Lacombe made official

Team currently deciding between Generals, Merchants for new name

The Eckville Eagles have announced they will be relocating to Lacombe this season.

Team Co-owner/Manager Reed Watts said moving the team to Lacombe was more difficult than he thought.

“I knew it would be a task but I didn’t think we would be rejected by the league,” he said.

The request to move the senior AA NCHL team was initially turned down earlier this summer by the league and Hockey Alberta, however a subsequent review during league meetings this fall led to an approval.

“In June, we didn’t have Hockey Alberta support because we weren’t aware we needed to use them for a relocate. In the fall, we had their support and they were critical to helping us move,” he said.

Watts said his group will continue to run the team in Lacombe — with some coordination from the group who ran the AAA Lacombe Generals. The team will not play for the Allan Cup, which is a AAA trophy and requires intent, which the Eagles do not have.

The team continue to play under the Eckville Eagles name until a new name is decided and is approved by the league and Hockey Alberta.

“We have narrowed it down to either the Generals or the Merchants. The Merchants are a historical name and the Generals are obviously a popularity thing,” he said.

The Eagles will play their first game on Oct. 12 in Westlock. The rest of the schedule has not been released.

Watts said it is awesome as a team to move to Lacombe, but is personally bittersweet for him — who grew up and played minor hockey in Eckville.

“There is a high level of excitement. We have an agreement with the City to use the room that the Generals and the City built,” he said.

Watts added the move is not an indictment on Eckville.

“The upside of Lacombe is so high that it was almost impossible to say no,” he said.

Watts said the Eagles are looking to piggy-back off the success and popularity of the former AAA Generals group and intends to field a roster of new and returning players.

“We want to get back to our winning ways. Last year was a down year, but we are hopeful we can duplicate our regular season success an finally punch a ticket to provincials,” he said.



todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Sylvan Lake students visit with Speaker of the Legislative Assembly

Speaker Nathan Cooper visited Steffie Woima Nov. 14 as part of his outreach program

WATCH: Washboard Union opens bull riding weekend in Sylvan Lake

Country artists Jason Benoit and Washboard Union played to a full audience Nov. 14

Alberta Justice Minister advocates UCP rural crime plan

Expanded property rights, more power to peace officers, demonetizing scrap mental part of UCP plan

Sylvan Lake adopts new fire and fireworks bylaws

The change in the bylaw is to reflect the new National Fire Code 2019-Alberta Edition

Sylvan Lake artist to perform at BRC cabaret

Dylan Gillett will take to the stage Friday evening after the bull riders have finished

Listening to Christmas music too early could affect your mental health

Linda Blair, a clinical psychologist, says preemptive Christmas music can trigger anxiety

Supreme Court of Canada dismisses murder appeals in 2013 Calgary swarming death

Assmar Shlah and Franz Cabrera were convicted in 2016 of second-degree murder

One year on, most oil-and-gas bailout money has moved, federal government says

Sweden’s central bank says it has sold its Alberta-government issued bonds

Ski resorts selling mountain water is a risky move, critics say

Alberta allowed ski resort in Kananaskis Country to sell about 50 million litres to third party

Sportsnet looks at new options for Coach’s Corner time slot, post-Don Cherry

Spokesperson says Hall of Fame feature on tap this weekend after co-host’s firing

CN Rail confirms job cuts as weakening economy cuts into freight volumes

Railroad also said it was affected by a slowdown in the B.C.’s forestry sector

New case of vaping-related illness in Quebec brings national total to 8

Quebec health minister considering tightening the rules around vaping products

Greens to vote against Liberal throne speech unless carbon targets toughened: May

Green leader Elizabeth May and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met Friday, discussing common ground

Alberta Opposition asks auditor general to review Kenney adviser’s London trips

The office declined to give details of the meetings, citing corporate confidences

Most Read